TRAVEL PROCEDURES: Credit-bearing Programs

           The Colorado School of Mines recognizes the need to promote global awareness in today’s interdependent world. To that end, Mines encourages students and faculty to participate in educational activities abroad. To promote the health and safety of people traveling abroad on University-sponsored (faculty-led) trips, the Office of Global Education provide support services before and after Program departure. 

        Faculty-led programs offer students the chance to take Mines courses with their peers abroad. The procedures outlined below apply to credit-bearing programs organized by any department or organization at Mines and are typically offered during the summer for 3 credit hours, many of which are open to all majors.

I. Overview  

To ensure consistency, minimize liabilities and maximize resources, the following guidelines have been established for faculty interested in proposing credit-bearing programs at the Colorado School of Mines. The guidelines in this document have been developed by the Offices of Global Education and Budget and Financial Planning.

All credit-bearing faculty-led programs must adhere to these guidelines to be considered a Mines-sponsored program. Approved faculty-led programs will have the support of Education Abroad and Budget and Financial Planning.

The sections below outline procedures for program design, budget development, student recruitment/advertising, predeparture planning and orientation, teaching, on-site coordination, and completion of required Cleary Act Reporting. For the purposes of these procedures:

“Program” means any group trip or activity abroad involving Mines’ students

“Program Leader” means a person designated by a Mines’ department or chartered student organization to lead a Program.

“Participant” means any person going abroad on a Program, including Mines’ students, faculty, staff, and others who accompany an activity abroad involving Mines’ students.

II. Program Proposal

Program leaders considering a new study abroad program should first consult with the Office of Education Abroad. The Director will advise the program leader and will consult with the Assistant Vice President (AVP) of Global Education regarding the feasibility of the program. The Office of Education Abroad will advise the program leader of the determination.

  • All first-time proposed courses must be recommended by the respective department head. A syllabus for each course is required for program approval and should be submitted as part of the proposal packet to Education Abroad. Regardless of location, programs teaching more than one course will require separate proposals for each one.
  • Faculty are required to submit proposals 12 to 14 months prior to the departure date. Upon submission, allow 4–6 weeks for the Office of Education Abroad, the Office of Budget and Financial Planning, and the AVP of Global Education to review and provide feedback on the proposed program. Education Abroad may request additional information from the faculty/sponsoring academic department if needed.
  • Barring any significant program changes, formal approval for the faculty-led program is required only once by Education Abroad. Major changes to course content, location, credits, etc. will require a new proposal and the completion of a formal program approval process.
  • The program leader is not authorized to promote the price of the program until the program and its associated budget have been formally approved by the Office of Budget and Financial Planning.

III. Program Management

  • It is recommended that all faculty-led programs have one leader (“program leader”) and one assistant. If the program has support in-country, an assistant may not be necessary and should be discussed with the Director of Education Abroad.
  • Reporting to the program leader, the assistant is a Mines faculty/staff member or graduate student assisting in program leadership and logistics. Assistant duties are to be determined in conjunction with the program leader and could include, but not be limited to, crisis management assistance as well as assisting with the logistical direction of the program should the program leader be unable to do so. Non-Mines assistants may also be considered but may require additional paperwork from Human Resources and other offices. As such, if a non-Mines assistant is desired, please provide a brief write-up explaining the rationale of why this would benefit the program. This information must be included in the proposal to the Office of Education Abroad.
  • All faculty-led programs will be managed by Education Abroad in conjunction with the program leader. The program leader is the primary point of contact for the program.
  • The program leader is responsible for supervising and monitoring each student’s conformance to Mines policies, regulations, conduct expectations. Program leaders should be familiar with Mines’ Code of Conduct and section 9.1 International Travel Student Policy in the Procedures Manual.
  • All participants, including faculty and assistants, are required to attend a pre-departure orientation conducted by the program leader with support from the Office of Education Abroad. Program leaders are highly encouraged to conduct additional program-specific pre-departure orientations as well as an on-site arrival orientation.

IV. Enrollment

  • Enrollment criteria/requirements will be established by the program leader and shared with the Office of Education Abroad (at a minimum, all students much be in good academic and disciplinary standing).
  • Faculty-led programs must meet a minimum student enrollment to satisfy the break-even point analysis (revenues to cover all expenses including leader salary, travel, program development, and all program costs). The minimum number of students enrolled may vary depending on program cost. This will be determined by Budget and Financial Planning with final approval from the AVP.
  • Each program will coordinate course registration with the home academic department and the Office of the Registrar.
  • Any non-Mines student must first apply for admission as a non-degree seeking student. Once admitted to Mines, the student may then apply to participate in a faculty-led program.
  • Inactive Mines students must apply for readmission and be accepted to participate in a faculty-led program.
  • All participants in any of the faculty-led programs must be enrolled in the course(s) taught in the program. Guests are not allowed to participate in a program unless their visit does not interfere with the program’s academic goals.
  • When a program offers multiple courses, students must be enrolled in at least one of the courses, but not necessarily in all the courses offered (this policy must be in alignment with requirements set by Budget and Financial Planning.
  • Recruiting participants for the program is one of the primary responsibilities of the program leader. A minimum number of participants (per the program budget) must be enrolled in the course for the program to run. Student returnees who enjoy sharing their experience and the Office of Education Abroad may be available to assist with recruitment efforts upon request.
  • The AVP reserves the right to cancel any faculty-led program due to low enrollment numbers, inability to meet revenue expectations (based on break-even point analysis by Budget and Financial Planning), political instability in the host country, disasters (natural or other) or any other reason at the sole discretion of the AVP.

V. Program Budget and Cost

  • Faculty-led programs must operate within their approved budget. All programs must break-even and cannot operate on a budget deficit.
  • Program budgets are designed to breakeven but are also structured to prevent unexpected overages.
  • The budget development of the program cost directly correlates to the student program fee assessed. Therefore, changes in participation and cost projections will directly influence student costs.
  • All expenses must be accounted for in the proposed budget.
  • Once a program price has been advertised, it cannot be changed.
  • The Offices of Education Abroad and Budget and Financial Planning will work with the program leader to create a budget for the program utilizing the most recent budget template. This is a shared responsibility to ensure that the budget includes all possible expenses. Items not included in the budget will not be approved and/or reimbursed. Budget adjustments after the budget has been approved will only be allowed to account for currency fluctuations as well as other volatile expenses, such as gasoline prices, and must be approved by the Office of Budget and Financial Planning.
  • Mines cannot and will not make payments to any vendors or service providers prior to all students confirming their participation. By confirming their participation, students are making a nonrefundable financial commitment to cover their portion of the cost of operating the program. Only after a student confirms, may the leader begin making payments to vendors.
  • Program leaders are not authorized to sign contracts with vendors or service providers without approval from Procurement. The Office of Education Abroad will work with the AVP to acquire any necessary signatures when needed.

VI. Compensation and Reimbursement

  • The Office of Education Abroad is not involved in determining faculty compensation for courses taught on faculty-led programs. Compensation will be outlined in the faculty contract for each course and coordinated through Budget and Financial Planning.
  • Stipends and speaker honorariums are to be determined by the program leader in conjunction with Budget and Financial Planning.
  • Assistants who are Mines faculty members will not receive compensation (aside from established travel costs and per diem) during the program unless they are teaching a course. 12-month contracted full-time employees are already being paid for full-time service to Mines and therefore will not receive any additional compensation during the program aside from established travel costs and per diem.
  • Mines will only reimburse program leaders and assistants for approved budgeted items. In the event of an emergency, the Office of Education Abroad in conjunction with the AVP for Global Education, will determine any reimbursements.
  • Mines reserves the right to refuse reimbursements for any expenses that were not included in the original budget and/or are not in accordance with the university’s policies and procedures.
  • Any undocumented expenses or unauthorized charges will become the responsibility of the individuals who incurred them.

VII. Refund and Cancellations

  • The tuition refund policy for faculty-led programs is set by guidelines and dates established by the Office of the Bursar.
  • Program fees are nonrefundable. Student airfare refunds are also not allowed.
  • If the university cancels a program, select fees may be refunded.

VIII. Insurance and Risk Mitigation

  • Enrollment in Mines CISI Health Insurance Plan, coordinated by Office of Education Abroad, is mandatory for all participants (students, faculty, staff, and assistants). The price must be included in the overall budget for the program. If a program leader is working with an external program service provider that includes better insurance coverage as a mandatory component of its package, enrollment in CISI may not be required.
  • The cost of insurance, including that of the program leader and assistant, will be included in the program budget.
  • All participants (students, faculty, staff, and assistants) must complete all forms required by the Office of Education Abroad and any other department (if needed) by the established deadline prior to departure.
  • Program leaders and assistants should be prepared to deal with emergencies while abroad and are required to promptly inform the Office of Education Abroad and Student Life in such occurrence. Funds may be available in the program budget for program-related communications (mobile phones, internet use, etc.). However, any expenses above the allocated funds will not be reimbursed unless in an emergency.
  • Each program will need to provide their participants with a program specific information packet. The Office of Education Abroad will provide examples.

IX. Advertising and Promotion

  • The program leader is responsible for promoting a faculty-led program in their department and other departments at Mines. The Daily Blast and social media announcements are all options for advertising.
  • The program leader is not authorized to promote the price of the program until the program and budget have been formally approved.
  • The Office of Education Abroad will assist with the promotion of the faculty-led program by including program information and links through a TerraDotta online brochure, promoting the program during informational sessions and fair events (whenever possible) and through one-on-one advising sessions.

X. Application

Please log into the OnBase application to submit a proposal: _________________________

Note that the AVP reserves the right to cancel any faculty-led program at any time. Reasons for cancellation may include, but are not limited to, low enrollment numbers, inability to meet revenue expectations (based on a break-even point), political instability in the host country, pandemics, and disasters (natural or other).



Global Education
Green Center, Suite 219
924 16th Street
Colorado School of Mines
Golden, CO 80401 

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